Sunday, May 4, 2014

Concert Preview - Milwaukee Festival Brass

Don't forget the Concord Chamber Orchestra and the Menomonee Falls Symphony both perform Saturday evening May 10.

Now onto the concert preview.  The Milwaukee Festival Brass performs Impressions of Cornwall on Sunday May 18 at St. John's Lutheran Church at 20275 Davidson Road in Brookfield at 3 PM.  Music Director Mark Taylor passed me his thoughts on the concert and I decided to post them directly for you to enjoy.

Fresh off its second place finish at the 2014 North American Brass Band Championships, the award-winning Milwaukee Festival Brass will present “Impressions of Cornwall,” the final concert of its 2013-2014 season.   This program is designed to take listeners on a musical journey, visiting the sights and sounds, the people and places of England’s southwest corner.

“The Cornish people have a rich history, full of proud traditions and a fiercely independent spirit, sprinkled with the stuff of legend.”  Some historians believe the fabled King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table ruled in Cornwall.  Another royal couple, Wagner’s ill-fated Tristan and Isolde, sang their final love duets in Cornwall.  Once a separate kingdom independent of England, the region is home to an ancient language (Cornish) still spoken by a few residents but gradually making a comeback in schools there. 

The concert will include Malcolm Arnold’s Four Cornish Dances, an evocative look at the Cornish landscape, complete with peasant dancing, abandoned tin mines, church hymns, and village parades.  From the band’s tenor horn section, new member Courtney Balk, a recent music graduate from Illinois Wesleyan University, will perform the third movement “Rondo” from Mozart’s Horn Concerto No. 3.  Other selections will include two Cornish marches, a beautiful prelude on the hymn tune “St. Agnes,” and works by Cornish composer and arranger Goff Richards, one of the most prolific writers for brass band in the 20th century.

This concert also provides the band an opportunity to celebrate its High School Apprentice Program.  This year’s apprentice, tenor hornist and University High School sophomore Robert Mason, will be joined by his entire section in a transcription of Scott Joplin’s Maple Leaf Rag.

The Milwaukee Festival Brass will present “Impressions of Cornwall” on Sunday, May 18, 2014 at 3:00 p.m. at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 20275 Davidson Road in Brookfield, WI.  Tickets are $12, or $9 for seniors and students.  Group rates are available.  For more information, please visit the band’s website.

Hope to see you at the concert!

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